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Adventure Calendar

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The Doctor Who Adventure Calendar — originally launched under the name Advent Calendar in 2006 — was a standard holiday feature of the official BBC Doctor Who website. Like an actual Advent calendar, the Adventure Calendars offered a new "treat" for fans every day from the first of December through to Christmas. They were used to ignite interest in the then-upcoming Christmas special. Among the treats offered were things like games, desktop wallpapers, trailers, music clips and videos, as well as exclusive short stories and novellas. Though most of the treats directly supported the Christmas special, sometimes they were reminders of the series that had been broadcast earlier in that year.

A notable exception to the scheduling was the 2009 instalment, which continued past Christmas until 1 January 2010 in order to promote both chapters of TV: The End of Time.

The calendars persisted on the website long after their particular Christmas had passed. As of December 2013, most elements of the calendars were still viewable in the official site's archives.

Due to licensing, prior to 2010, most video-related items could not be accessed by non-UK visitors on the site. Since 2010, however, most video content has been available internationally.

Year Day Item
2006
Advent2006
1 Desktop wallpaper of the Doctor's TARDIS in a Christmas setting
2 Secret Santa, a simple game that asked users to guess which Doctor Who character was behind a Santa mask
3 Graphic design of the pound notes made especially for The Runaway Bride
4 Recording of "Song for Ten"
5 Printable Christmas cards using images from Bride
6 New Earth in-vision commentary
7 A puzzle which, when solved, gave viewers a tiny glimpse of the Bride script
8 Peter McKinstry concept art of a Roboform Santa Claus mask
9 A scene from the then-upcoming Invasion of the Bane
10 Desktop wallpaper from the narrative of The Runaway Bride itself
11 Who-RU Monster Quiz
12 22-second trailer for The Runaway Bride
13 WhoSpy, a feature which showed set decorations for Bride in situ and invited viewers to guess what they could possibly mean. For example, one of the shots was a close-up of buttons on the lift in what viewers would come to know as H.C. Clements.
14 Santa Shooter, a simple arcade-style game that invited players to "Save the Earth! Shoot Santa."
15 Christmas message from Murray Gold and two tracks from Army of Ghosts that did not appear on Doctor Who Original Soundtrack Recording
16 Monster Match, a Doctor Who version of the classic game Concentration
17 A diary entry by Tors Grantham about the making of CON: "Music and Monsters"
18 Doomsday in-vision commentary
19 32-second trailer for Bride
20 A clip from Jo Whiley Meets Doctor Who, a 3-hour special on BBC Radio One featuring Jo Whiley and David Tennant that was broadcast on Christmas Day 2006, immediately prior to Bride's debut on BBC One.
21 A link to the then-newly-created Sarah Jane Adventures website
22 A link to the the then-newly-created, but not finished, Bride page on the main Doctor Who site
23 Tooth and Claw in-vision commentary
24 An extract from the then-forthcoming commentary to Bride featuring David Tennant and Julie Gardner
25 A link to the finished Bride page on the main Doctor Who site, which now included more "goodies"
2007
Advent2007
1 Video season's greetings from Kylie Minogue and David Tennant
2 "The Frozen", a short story by Rupert Laight with illustrations by Martin Geraghty
3 WhoSpy
4 Companions Quiz
5 printable Christmas cards, themed around Voyage of the Damned
6 Audio of "The Old Rugged Cross" as performed by Murray Gold the Crouch End Festival Chorus with arrangement by Ben Foster
7 Printable Christmas posters, of a style first seen in The Christmas Invasion and The Runaway Bride
8 10-second teaser of Damned
9 Jigsaw puzzle that revealed Peter McKinstry art of the Titanic and an extract of the Damned script
10 Desktop wallpaper from Damned
11 Gridlock in-vision commentary
12 Into the Vortex game, in which players flew the Doctor's TARDIS through the time vortex, trying to collect blue energy particles, but avoid red energy particles
13 video of various people involved with Damned singing "We Wish You a Merry Christmas", including Bernard Cribbins, Danny Hargreaves, Ben Foster, Murray Gold, Debbie Chazen, Clive Rowe, Stefan Davis, Jimmy Vee and other, less identifiable members of the production team
14 1'30" trailer for Damned
15 Crafting project to make a Heavenly Host Christmas ornament
16 19-sec. clip from Damned (Tennant's "I'm the Doctor, I'm a Time Lord" speech)
17 Dalek Break-out game, in which players tried to manoeuvre explosive containers onto specific areas of the gameboard in order to generate an explosion that would help them ascend to an exit
18 A link to the then-new Comic Maker, which allowed users to make comic strips using pre-defined artwork
19 "Who's Asking?", a print interview with Russell T Davies, Julie Gardner and Phil Collinson, which looked back at series 3 and previewed series 4
20 Link to the then-newly-created webpage for Damned
21 40-sec. trailer for Damned, which clearly revealed for the first time that the Titanic was a spaceship, not the 20th century Titanic
22 The Sound of Drums in-vision commentary
23 Extract from the then-forthcoming podcast commentary
24 Damned-themed screensavers
25 55-second teaser for CON: "Kylie Special"
2008[1]
Advent2008
1 video Christmas greeting from David Tennant
2 Print interview with Graeme Harper
3 Behind-the-scenes video with David Tennant on a day off around Cardiff
4 "Number 1, Gallows Gate Road", part 1, a short story by Rupert Laight with illustrations by Brian Williamson
5 Black Hole, a game in which the player had to pilot the TARDIS out of a black hole
6 Printable Christmas cards themed around The Next Doctor
7 Desktop wallpapers related to Next
8 Cosmic Collider, a game in which players uncovered picture and revealed a script extract from Next
9 A Monster Files instalment relative to Next
10 A Cyberman screensaver
11 "Number 1, Gallows Gate Road", part 2
12 Cyber Quiz
13 Craft project to make a Cybershade face mask
14 WhoSpy
15 Trailer for Next
16 A selection of music by Murray Gold
17 A link to the then-newly-enhanced Comic Maker
18 A trailer for the television debut of Doctor Who at the Proms
19 Jobsworth Judoon, a game in which players had to help the Doctor break the security codes around a forcefield holding the TARDIS
20 New desktop wallpapers and the Fear Factor for Next
21 A teaser clip from Next featuring Miss Hartigan and the Cybermen
22 An extract from the then-upcoming podcast commentary for Next
23 A video jigsaw puzzle which, when solved, unlocked an exclusive teaser clip from Next
24 A video Christmas message from Velile Tshabalala
25 A video retrospective on Donna Noble, called Donna's Story
2009[2]
Advent2009
1 Doctor in the House, a parlour game in which contestants tried to smuggle lines from Doctor Who into everyday conversation. Unusually, this was not a video game, quiz or puzzle, but a game that players could enjoy with their friends and acquaintances. The site gave a link to a downloadable file that provided instructions
2 Printable Christmas cards based on The End of Time
3 "Inspect a Gadget!", a short video giving a behind-the-scenes look at Gadget
4 Debut of the 2009 BBC Christmas idents
5 "Dreamland: Origins and Inspirations", a short video about Dreamland with director Gary Russell
6 "The Advent of Fear", part 1, a short story by Mark B. Oliver
7 Desktop wallpapers relative to Time
8 "Whatever happened to Cassie and Jimmy?", a short video in which Phil Ford opined on the post-Dreamland fates of Cassie Rice and Jimmy Stalkingwolf
9 The Great Big Doctor Who Christmas Quiz
10 "The Advent of Fear", part 2
11 A short video of David Tennant singing "I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles)" with The Proclaimers
12 Audio of "The Wonder of Balloons", a track from The Next Doctor by Murray Gold
13 A video conversation with Louise Page, reflecting on her time as the costume designer on Doctor Who
14 Two screensavers: one featuring the John Simm version of The Master, and one featuring images from The End of Time, part one
15 Video Christmas greetings from Russell T Davies, David Tennant and Julie Gardner, plus a link to the then-newly-created webpage for The End of Time, part one
16 Seven different retrospective videos about David Tennant's time as the Doctor, each on a different theme, designed to answer the question, "What is Doctor Who?"
17 "The Doctor on My Shoulder", part one, a short story by Daniel Roth
18 An extract from the radio programme, Who on Who?, in which David Tennant interviewed Russell T Davies about his time on Doctor Who
19 Partners in Time, a physical card game in which players print off cards representing each of the ten Doctors and then compared whether their card represented a higher- or lower-numbered incarnation of the Doctor than their opponents' cards
20 A series of self-advertised "terrible jokes" with a Doctor Who theme
21 Video discussion between David Tennant, Julie Gardner and Russell T Davies about what makes a good Christmas Day celebration
22 WhoSpy
23 "The Doctor on My Shoulder", part two
24 A Ghost Story for Christmas, a short video story featuring the Weeping Angels
25 An extract from the then-forthcoming podcast commentary on The End of Time, part one
26 Craft project to make a Master's face mask
27 Short video with Bernard Cribbins
28 An instalment of The Big Questions with John Simm
29 A single new desktop wallpaper of the Tenth Doctor from The End of Time, part two
30 Printable New Year's greeting cards
31 2009 Bumper Quiz
32 Extract from the podcast commentary on The End of Time, part two
2010
Advent2010 -2
1 The 2010 edition of the Doctor in the House printable game
2 Original announcement of the 25 December 2010 release date for GAME: Shadows of the Vashta Nerada
3 Video of Matt Smith, Karen Gillan and Arthur Darvill turning on the Christmas Lights in downtown Cardiff. Also, video of a brief question-and-answer session about series 6, hosted by Jason Mohammad
4 Wallpaper images from A Christmas Carol
5 Four Christmas card templates, themed on A Christmas Carol.
6 Online game called Haven't I Seen Your Fez Somewhere Before?, in which the user answered multiple choice questions about photos from series 5 that had items hidden by a super-imposed fez. Oddly, this feature had already debuted on the site on 6 November 2010, and so was more "re-gift" than "gift".
7 Series 5-themed screensavers
8 Matt Smith's Cracking Christmas Challenge, part one. Essentially a Christmas version of The Big Questions. This time, Smith talks about his favourite Christmas songs and movies and tells what made filming series 5 so fun.
9 The novella, Snowfall begins with the chapter, "Frozen"[3] by Gavin Collinson
10 The novella, Snowfall, continues with the chapter, "Cold Snap, part one", by Mark B. Oliver
11 The BBC One trailer for A Christmas Carol, containing no new material compared with the one seen during Children in Need 2010. In fact, it was a reduction on the previously-released trailer, being edited back to only about 35 seconds.
12 "Christmas Questions" feature: print interview with various people associated with The Adventure Games series, including: Nicholas Briggs, Barnaby Edwards and Phil Ford
13 "Christmas Questions" feature: print interview with Katherine Jenkins
14 First images from GAME: Shadows of the Vashta Nerada, made available as desktop wallpapers
15 Four never-before-seen preview clips of A Christmas Carol
16 Matt Smith's Cracking Christmas Challenge, part two. Essentially a Christmas version of The Big Questions. This time, questions about working with Katherine Jenkins and what Smith's best-ever Christmas present was.
17 The novella, Snowfall, continues with two new chapters: "Cold Snap, part two", by Mark B. Oliver, and "The Thaw", by Gavin Collinson
18 Preview clip of Colin Baker, Frazer Hines, Louise Jameson, John Leeson, and Katy Manning on the 20 December 2010 edition of Celebrity Eggheads
19 Matt Smith's Cracking Christmas Challenge, part three. Essentially a Christmas version of The Big Questions. This time, Smith plays a spot-the-difference game with a couple of photos of the Doctor and Amy in the TARDIS.
20 The novella, Snowfall, continues with the chapter, "Vampire Hurricane, part one", by Gavin Collinson
21 Video of Matt Smith with a new introduction of A Christmas Carol
22 Video of Matt Smith introducing GAME: Shadows of the Vashta Nerada
23 The novella, Snowfall, continues with the chapter, "Vampire Hurricane, part two", by Gavin Collinson
24 The conclusion of Snowfall, with the chapter, "Station Pressure", by Gavin Collinson. Also, the release of the entire Snowfall story in a single, downloadable booklet.
25 Video of Matt Smith, Karen Gillan and Katherine Jenkins sending their Christmas wishes.[4]
2011
1 The Game of Rassilon: The Christmas Special, a new quiz game.
2 A video of Matt Smith discussing TV: The Doctor, the Widow and the Wardrobe
3 Picture gallery from TV: The Doctor, the Widow and the Wardrobe.
4 Doctor Who-themed Christmas card print-outs
5 Three puzzles
6 WC: Prequel (The Doctor, the Widow and the Wardrobe)
7 Interview with Bill Bailey, Arabella Weir and Paul Bazely.
8 A link to the Doctor Who mobile website.
9 A Christmas video starring the Doctor Who cast and crew.
10 A new edition of the game Doctor in the House.
11 Galleries from the recently rediscovered episodes from TV: Galaxy 4 and The Underwater Menace.
12 Marcus Wilson discusses TV: The Doctor, the Widow and the Wardrobe.
13 A new trailer for TV: The Doctor, the Widow and the Wardrobe.
14 3 preview clips for TV: The Doctor, the Widow and the Wardrobe.
15 Two screensavers: one for TV: The Doctor, the Widow and the Wardrobe, the other for all of the Doctor's Christmas adventures.
16 Archival footage of Tom Baker switching on Christmas lights.
17 Picture gallery from TV: The Doctor, the Widow and the Wardrobe.
18 On-set interviews with Bill Bailey and Arabella Weir.
19 Archival footage of Tom Baker visiting school children.
20 Part one of Attack of the Snowmen by Mark B. Oliver.
21 Part two of Attack of the Snowmen by Mark B. Oliver.
22 Clips from Galaxy 4 and info on Chumbley and puzzles
23 Three new clips with Matt Smith and Steven Moffat
24 Part three of Attack of the Snowmen by Mark B. Oliver
25 Galleries, photos, videos and much more to do with The Doctor, the Widow and the Wardrobe
2012
Advent2012
1 "Jenna-Louise Coleman: Becoming the Companion" A video on Jenna-Louise Coleman's audition process.
2 5 new wallpapers from The Snowmen.
3 "Steven Moffat on the First Dalek Adventure." The first in a series of videos about the history of the Daleks.
4 "Revisit The Evil of the Daleks with Steven Moffat." The second in a series of videos about the history of the Daleks.
5 Pictures and wallpapers from The Snowmen
6 Doctor Who Game of Rassilon Christmas Special
7 "Jenna-Louise Coleman: Becoming the Companion" A video on Jenna-Louise Coleman's plans for Christmas
8 Interviews from Steven Moffat, Matt Smith, Jenna-Louise Coleman and Richard E. Grant and Tom Ward on The Snowmen
9 "Steven Moffat return to the Day of the Daleks with ." The third in a series of videos about the history of the Daleks.
10 "Richard E. Grant sends season’s greetings and discusses The Snowmen!" A video on Richard E. Grant's thought on the Christmas Special.
11 "Dan Starkey on the Christmas Special and the return of Strax." A video on Dan Starkey return to Doctor Who.
12 "Enjoy the lastest trilling trailer for The Snowmen." A new trailer for The Snowmen
13 "A selection of exclusive Doctor Who Christmas cards and wallpapers." Christmas cards and wallpapers for The Snowmen
14 "Find out more about the Silurian, the Sontaran and Jenny Flint." Updated Character Profiles on Madame Vastra, Jenny Flint and Strax.
15 "Part One of the brilliant Doctor Who: Houdini and The Space Cuckoos by Joseph Lidster." Online story involving Harry Houdini and the Eleventh Doctor
16 "Part Two of the thrilling Doctor Who: Houdini and The Space Cuckoos."
17 "A Christmas Prequel: Vastra Investigates by Steven Moffat." A webcast prequel for The Snowmen.
18 "Video! Peek behind the scenes as Matt Smith interviews Jenna-Louise Coleman." Matt Smith interviews Jenna-Louise Coleman
19 "Read the penultimate part of Doctor Who: Houdini and The Space Cuckoos by Joseph Lidster.
20 "Casting director Andy Pryor recalls the stars of previous Doctor Who Christmas Specials..."
21 Songtaran Carols video: "Join Strax and the gang for a seasonal Sontaran sing-song!" Strax's logical thoughts on Christmas Carols.
22 "Video: The first preview clip from The Snowmen'!"
23 "Video: Vastra and Jenny confront Simeon in this preview clip from The Snowmen!"
24 "Video: Matt Smith and Jenna-Louise Coleman introduce The Snowmen."
25 "It's the festive finale of Doctor Who: Houdini and The Space Cuckoos!"

Part 4 of Houdini and The Space Cuckoos

2013
Advent2013
1 Behind-the-scenes images from the making of The Five(ish) Doctors Reboot.
2 Quiz for The Day of the Doctor.
3 Pictures from The Night of the Doctor.
4 Interview with Paul McGann.
5 Pictures and wallpapers from The Time of the Doctor.
6 Character profile for the Zygons.
7 Pictures from The Time of the Doctor.
8 Christmas cards.
9 Interviews with Matt Smith and David Tennant.
10 Three jigsaw puzzles of production images.
11 35-second trailer to The Time of the Doctor
12 Interviews with Steven Moffat, Matt Smith, Jenna Coleman and Orla Brady
13 Picture gallery from The Time of the Doctor.
14 Interactive quiz on the Matt Smith era.
15 Character profile for Sarah Jane Smith.
16 Storyboard sequence from The Day of the Doctor.
17 Spot-the-difference puzzles.
18 Steven Moffat discusses Remembrance of the Daleks
19 Strax Field Report: The Doctors
20 Preview clip from The Time of the Doctor.
21 Steven Moffat discusses Genesis of the Daleks.
22 Strax Field Report: A Sontaran's View of Christmas.
23 Preview clip from The Time of the Doctor
24 Preview clip from The Time of the Doctor
25 Christmas greetings from Tasha Lem.

External links

Footnotes

  1. As of June 2010, much of the 2008 Adventure Calendar wasn't functioning properly. Though the official website still retained a fairly complete list of the calendar's contents, the provided links weren't functional.
  2. Because of the special nature of The End of Time, which was broadcast in two parts, ending on 1 January 2010, the Adventure Calendar of this year actually had 32 days, and therefore broke with the traditional format of an advent calendar
  3. The title of this chapter, on Day 9, appeared to be simply Snowfall. However, by Day 17, it was being retroactively subtitled Frozen, and that is the name ascribed to it in the full version of the story made available on Day 24.
  4. Note that other things happened on the official website on 25 December 2010. For UK residents, Christmas marked the free download release of GAME: Shadows of the Vashta Nerada for Mac and PC. Also, a video Christmas greeting from Tommy Knight, Anjli Mohindra and Daniel Anthony appeared under the title "SJA Christmas Video". However, these were not technically a part of the Adventure Calendar.

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